HOW OFTEN DO WE THINK ABOUT THE LITTLE THINGS WHICH GIVE US JOY?
These days people are only concerned about the grandiose or prominent things we achieve like a promotion or good marks or admission in the best of the universities and the list can go on. This raises a question in my mind; are these the only things we live for? Do these so-called ‘important things’ shape our entire life? Are we to live and die only for such things?
A lot of people might be knowing about the Mahudi temple. This temple is situated in the outskirts of Ahmedabad and is extremely well-known for its ‘sukhdi’. Sukhdi is a sweet delicacy made from ghee, jaggery and wheat flour. Outside the temple, one can see different types of stalls. These stalls range from selling small toys to food to vessels and other little artefacts.
One can also find some stalls selling soda. My family and me visit this temple once in 3-4 months. So there was this time when we were in Mahudi. We were all very thirsty and we came across this soda stall. The stall was named “ Kashmiri Soda” and it claimed to sell sweet and sour flavours of lemon soda. The stall was blue in colour with bottles kept on the small desk-like shelf which was made of rusty metal. The bottles were squeezed from the neck and there were marbles kept on the rim of the bottle. When the marble was pushed down, the pressure from the marble would create fizz in the soda.
In the very same stall, there was a big block of ice and a big machine. When we were near that stall, we could smell the zesty lemon being squeezed and poured into a tall glass. The ice block and the fizz machine would provide a cool and misty breeze for those standing nearby in the hot summer months. The smell of jaljeera and other masalas made it more tempting.
The man who sold the soda was an old man of sixty, medium to heavy build with a dusky complexion and white hair. He mostly was seen wearing a white vest and white dhoti. People generally called him 'kaka'.
This kaka used to sell soda since years at this very place. He never wished to change his job or to earn a lot of money.
The smile on his face which ran through his wrinkles when people quenched their thirst after drinking his soda was priceless. The look on his face just by doing a small service for people made him the sweetest person on earth.
He was so quick at making the soda which showed all the years of experience which gave him an expertise in this skill. Kaka had also kept two benches around his stall so that people could sit and enjoy his soda. The prices of his soda were also nominal, but a lot of people would give him a little extra seeing his hard work and dedication towards his job. This man is someone which inspired me to look at the little things we enjoy in life.
Now I ask the same question to our readers, do these so called ‘important things’ give rise to what we are today? Maybe the sodawala kaka was not so successful in his life as per the general definition. He never had a lot of money or promotions or luxuries in life. He was simple man who sold soda.
But, the difference between us and him is that he is happy doing what he does. He was never greedy in his life. We all crib and complain about the things we don't have, but have we ever looked back on the things we already have? We should all introspect about those things which actually make us happy rather than those which give us temporary and superficial pleasure.
It’s not wrong to want bigger things in life, but when we stop noticing the little things around us which make us happy, let’s ask ourselves again: Is that actually what we wanted?
What can we learn from the simple Mahudi Sodawala?